Sports Facilities in Galway
Galway City has many natural amenities including the River Corrib, Galway Bay, Lough Atalia and Rusheen Bay, which play host to numerous water sport activities from windsurfing to yacht racing, from water polo to swimming and diving. The City is situated on the doorstep of Connemara, encouraging outdoor sporting activities such as rock climbing, adventure biking, hill walking and horse riding. Galway’s broad range of sporting and recreational opportunities are endless, providing facilities for competitive sport to simple family outings. Specifically designated sporting facilities are located all around the City also, such as 90 playing pitches, 74 sports halls/gyms, 11 swimming pools, 7 water sports facilities, 53 tennis/basketball courts and over 10 horse riding centres.
Galway City Sports Partnership
Galway City Development Board (CDB) established 13 co-ordinating mechanisms to achieve the goals set out in “Gallimh Beo agus Bríomhar!” One of these co-ordinating mechanisms was the Sports & Recreation Forum (SRF). SRF held its inaugural meeting on 27th May 2002. The SRF was charged with “planning and developing initiatives towards forging a sustainable structure for local sports development based on the Irish Sports Council’s (ISC) strategy goals”. From the above mission statement a number of aims were set by the SRF including the establishment of an LSP for Galway City. A number of achievements accomplished during the SRF’s time include the development of a club database and employment of a Sports Development Officer. LSP designation for Galway City was announced in early 2007 by the ISC. A co-ordinator was appointed in July 2007 and work got underway to complete the Board of the GCSP.
Since our inception, GCSP has received over €351,240 in funding from the ISC. This level of funding shows the commitment of the ISC to the GCSP. Monitoring the level of impact that we have with these funds is very important. This is accomplished through a computerised reporting system called “SPEAK”. Results of all 33 LSPs are compiled and published by the ISC in an annual report. “The Irish Sports Monitor” is also published by the ISC and gives an account of activity levels of the population broken down by county. Each of these reports will go some way towards better planning of programmes to encourage people to participate in physical activity.
The three main functions of the LSPs are:
- Information – establish a consultative forum, initiate research, compile a sports directory and database, and identify needs and resources to form the basis of local planning.
- Education – provide quality opportunities for education and training at local level, provide training courses targeting volunteers and provide access to sport specific courses through the NGBs.
- Implementation – develop a strategic plan for local sport, appoint a professional administrator, secure related support services, select participation programmes for LSPs modified to suit local needs, increase the impact of national programmes delivered locally, market and promote sport and physical activity.